"Her hands are busy spinning thread, her fingers twisting fiber." Proverbs 31:19 NLT

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Packing the Necessities + "New" Ashford Wheel

I'm getting ready for a road trip. Although the laundry is up-to-date, I don't have any clothing in a bag yet, but I have gotten the most important things packed - my WIP's. And, as my friend says, "First Things First!" I mean, a girl's got to keep her hands busy, right?

These are all Christmas presents except for the socks on the right that I'm reinforcing and the gray fair isle hat - that's for me. yea!

Also, as I briefly alluded to back in May on this post, I had purchased a older Ashford Traditional Single Drive spinning wheel. I had given, yes, given my first spinning wheel, an Ashford away to a high school friend who came up to learn how to spin. I hadn't used that wheel for quite sometime since acquiring my Louet wheel, so I thought I could do without it. But a few weeks after it was gone, I realized it should have stayed with my family. After all, my kids learned cause-and-effect by using the foot peddle and watching all the movement from it.

I've been eyeballing them for awhile now so when I found this one on eBay for less than $200.00 USD, and after reading all the assurances and disclaimers, I went for it. I couldn't really tell if it worked or if it was even all there, but the seller assures his buyers that they put a lot of attention and care in the spinning wheels they restore. It, of course, arrived from New Zealand disassembled, which meant that we had to assemble it. And it had no directions.

I thought I could manage to put it together since I had been spinning, hauling, oiling, tightening screws, and the like on wheels for 4 decades. But as I began searching for instructions at the Ashford website, I discovered that there have been significant changes to this simplest of their wheels. PLUS I discovered that this newest purchase is even older than my original one. The web site instructions were not very applicable. So I had to enlist my engineer husband's help. Between the two of us, we got 'er done.

And now I'm trying to decide where to store it! I do think it will be great for spinning demonstrations because it looks old, compared to my faithful Louet.
And while it is not actually my original wheel, it still evokes many fond memories.

Here's my original in the first photo and the new purchase in the second. You can see the aesthetic changes in the 2 Traditional Single Drive models. And mine is over 35 years old. I would like to know the age of the second one. If you have an opinion, I'd love to hear it.

When it arrived, I was slightly disappointed in the color of it and as the finish seemed unsealed, I put some walnut stain on it. It is not like the original, but much closer than when it arrived.

I took several photos of the staining and assembling process so I will include them, for the (my) fun of it.
Here it is right after it arrived

And a close-up of the color of the wheel

After the staining

And assembled
One last thing, while searching for the age of the newly purchased, old wheel (!) I read the interesting story of the beginning of the Ashford Company. If you want to learn something about it, too, you can read it here.

I hope you are having a great week and are having some time for a bit of fun.


  1. Hope you're enjoying your break. I'm just back from a slightly longer than 2 week holiday. Like you, I had my bags of yarn, needles, hooks etc all ready to take with me. I managed to get a lot of knitting and crochet done while I was away and will hopefully be blogging about it soon - once I get myself organised and the mountain of laundry finished. A friend of mine gave me her spinning wheel. It was hand made specially for her but she hadn't used it for a long time and had nowhere to store it so it came to me. I really want to learn to spin - I've even got some fleeces now - but I think I need someone to show me how to do it.

    1. Oh, how grand it would to sit down with you and your wheel and get you started spinning , Gillian. That would be so fun.

      I'm sitting here with my parents on their front porch, chatting, knitting and (obviously) taking a moment to check email. Very relaxing.

  2. That is so cool that you took did all that with the wheel! :) It's so pretty.

    So, did you forget to bring anything on your trip?? Important stuff, like yarn?

    (I totally thought I commented on this post already..)

    1. Let's just say that my mother thinks I'm a bit crazy.


Thanks for the encouragement of your comments.